In today’s world, the proliferation of information technology, mobility and advanced
analytic tools has made the healthcare system more connected and interoperable than ever
Healthcare providers and payers are constantly working to standardize processes,
reduce costs and minimize Wait Times.
However, in order to implement these changes successfully, organizations must first understand the challenges that lie ahead.
With every passing year, technology is becoming increasingly integrated within the healthcare sector.
Consider all of the resources available through a connected community such as social media
or online marketplaces that allow consumers to compare prices for similar products from
different vendors in a matter of minutes rather than days or weeks.
Technological advancement is making it easier than ever to compare various healthcare providers and
suppliers while also allowing patients to manage their own health information
independently rather than relying solely on their personal physicians.
Healthcare Technology’s Integration
Healthcare technology is the use of information and communication technologies to
improve the quality and safety of healthcare.
The use of IT has grown exponentially in recent years, and many healthcare organizations have recognized the value of integrating IT to improve efficiency and patient safety.
Advanced technology can improve efficiency and quality of care by increasing the availability of healthcare services and decreasing the time it takes to complete these services.
Healthcare technology can help providers and facilities improve efficiency by increasing the availability of services.
For instance, a hospital might use a computer system that allows physicians to instantly access patient records and send medication orders.
This system could also include a reminder function that automatically sends a notification to a patient’s phone if their medications are due.
Healthcare Technology’s Interoperability
Much like how mobile devices and apps have transformed the way individuals access, store
and manage their health data, healthcare technology is beginning to evolve from a siloed
model of practice.
Instead of a fragmented approach to healthcare that focuses solely on the
needs of certain providers or facilities, these advancements are helping to bring the “whole
system” back into focus.
This could potentially reduce the burden placed on smaller providers while also reducing Wait Times for patients.
While healthcare technology is facilitating these advancements, the question remains, “what is the best way to implement these changes?” Medical offices,
hospitals, pharmacies and clinics are all attempting to gain a competitive advantage with advanced technology. However, they are also struggling with a lack of interoperability.
Healthcare organizations that have adopted a “disrupter” model of practice are often providing the most advanced technologies while simultaneously failing to provide the level of interoperability needed to fully reap the benefits.
Challenges Ahead for Healthcare Technology Integration
In order for healthcare technology to meet these lofty expectations, it will need to overcome
several important challenges.
The first challenge is that of scale. Human-centred care requires that patients feel comfortable with the technology used to provide care.
If a patient is too overwhelmed by the experience of interacting with technology, then they are unlikely
to reap the benefits of this integration.
This issue of scale could be exacerbated in certain demographics, for example, those with greater cognitive or physical impairments.
Encouragingly, studies have shown that technology integration can lead to positive
outcomes regardless of a patient’s demographic profile.
Benefits of Healthcare Technology Integration
While the integration of healthcare technology can provide numerous benefits, one of the
primary ones is cost reduction.
By adopting best-in-class technologies, providers and facilities can increase efficiency while simultaneously decreasing costs.
This could also potentially lead to an increase in revenue. Another potential benefit is that of improving patient satisfaction.
Providers and facilities that are able to better connect with their patients through technology are more likely to have a positive impact on the health and well-being of these individuals.
As the healthcare sector continues to integrate technologies, the challenges will only
However, healthcare organizations can overcome these challenges by adopting a
“whole system” approach that encompasses all aspects of care.
The more technology is integrated into the workflow, the greater the potential is for cost savings while also
improving patient experiences.
Healthcare technology integration and interoperability are important in order to achieve more efficient, effective and safer care delivery.
It also plays a key role in improving the health of the population. It is promising to see how technology is becoming more integrated in providing healthcare services